Another cold morning in December, indigo
shadows inch their way to a spell of darkness.
I pull the comfort of a new blanket around
my shoulders while my socked feet absorb
the shock of the slat floor’s constant complaint.
I hurry to light the kitchen fire. I am greedy
with a matchstick in hand, touching the news-
papers in four directions, waiting for tongues
of fire to latch upon the balanced logs. I wait
before the glow’s depth, its breath exhaling
what it can’t consume—like happiness, it gives
and gives, and lasts—it lasts, beyond darkness.
M. J. Iuppa is the Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Minor Program and Lecturer in Creative Writing at St. John Fisher College, and since 2000 to present, is a part-time lecturer in Creative Writing at The College at Brockport. Since 1986, she has been a teaching artist, working with K-12 students in Rochester, NY, and the surrounding area. Most recently, she was awarded the New York State Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Adjunct Teaching, 2017. She has four full-length poetry collections, This Thirst (Kelsay Books, 2017), Small Worlds Floating (Cherry Grove Collections, 2016), Within Reach (Cherry Grove Collections, 2010) and Night Traveler (Foothills Publishing, 2003), and 5 chapbooks. She lives on a small farm in Hamlin, NY.